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Trump-appointed judge may oversee Mar-a-Lago case as ex-president’s valet also charged – live | Donald Trump

Trump-appointed judge may oversee Mar-a-Lago case as ex-president’s valet also charged – live | Donald Trump

Trump’s valet charged as part of Mar-a-Lago documents investigation

Hugo Lowell

Federal prosecutors have charged Donald Trump’s valet in addition to the former president as part of the criminal investigation examining retention of national security documents at his Mar-a-Lago resort and obstruction of justice, according to two people familiar with the matter.

The exact charges against the valet, Walt Nauta, were unclear because the indictment remains under seal. One lawyer for Nauta could not confirm the indictment and another lawyer for Nauta who is off on vacation could not immediately be reached for comment.

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Nauta has been under scrutiny for potential obstruction charges after he told prosecutors that Trump had instructed him to move boxes of potentially classified documents out of the Mar-a-Lago storage room after the Justice department had issued a subpoena for the return of any such papers.

The lawyers for Nauta were also told last year by prosecutors that he had given them potentially conflicting testimony that could give rise to false statements charges, the people said. Prosecutors recommended that Nauta cooperate against Trump but were rebuffed.

Key events

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The former vice-president, Mike Pence, has again called for the attorney general, Merrick Garland, to unseal the indictment against Donald Trump immediately.

Speaking at a campaign rally in New Hampshire today, Pence called on Garland to “stop hiding” and to “stand up and explain to us why this was necessary before the sun sets today”.

Pence said:

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The American people deserve to know the basis of this unprecedented action. They deserve to know today.
Once the facts and the laws are explained and revealed in full to the American people, we can all make our own judgment.

Here’s a clip of Pence’s speech:

Mike Pence calls on Attorney general Merrick Garland to unseal indictment against Trump – video

Here are some images of President Joe Biden and the first lady, Jill Biden, arriving at Seymour Johnson air force base in Goldsboro, North Carolina.

The pair are scheduled to make stops at a community college in Rocky Mount to discuss workforce training programmes as well as at the Fort Liberty military base to talk about new efforts to help veterans and families of those serving in the military.

President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden arrive at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base in Goldsboro, North Carolina.
President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden arrive at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base in Goldsboro, North Carolina. Photograph: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images
President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden greet Chief Master Sgt. Peter Martinez, Command Chief, 4th Fighter Wing, left, and Col. Lucas “Shack” J Teel, Commander, 4th Fighter Wing, second from left, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base in Goldsboro, N.C.
President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden greet Chief Master Sgt. Peter Martinez, Command Chief, 4th Fighter Wing, left, and Col. Lucas “Shack” J Teel, Commander, 4th Fighter Wing, second from left, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base in Goldsboro, N.C. Photograph: Susan Walsh/AP

Hillary Clinton has also publicly responded to Donald Trump’s indictment, tweeting a meme of herself wearing a hat with “but her emails” on it, with the caption:

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Bringing this back in light of recent news. Get a limited-edition But Her Emails hat and support @onwardtogether groups working to strengthen our democracy.

Trump repeatedly criticised his 2016 presidential election opponent for using a personal email server while she served as secretary of state under the Obama administration.

Following a years-long internal investigation into Clinton’s use of private email, the state department said it had found “no persuasive evidence of systemic, deliberate mishandling of classified information”.

The White House’s deputy press secretary, Olivia Dalton, repeatedly declined to comment on the federal indictment of Donald Trump as she faced questions from reporters today.

Dalton said:

We’re just not going to comment on this case and would refer you to the DOJ, which runs its criminal investigations independently.

She went on to say that President Biden “is a president who respects the rule of law and has said that since day one, that’s precisely why we’re not commenting here. He believes in respecting the independence of the DOJ and protecting the integrity of their processes”. She added:

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That’s, again, why we’ll leave it there.

Dalton was speaking to reporters aboard Air Force One, as Biden flew to North Carolina. The president has announced a new executive order aimed at helping military spouses and families.

Today, I’m headed to North Carolina’s Fort Liberty where, alongside the First Lady and military-connected families, I’ll sign an Executive Order aimed at strengthening economic opportunities for military and veteran spouses, caregivers, and survivors.

— President Biden (@POTUS) June 9, 2023

Trump’s valet charged as part of Mar-a-Lago documents investigation

Hugo Lowell

Hugo Lowell

Federal prosecutors have charged Donald Trump’s valet in addition to the former president as part of the criminal investigation examining retention of national security documents at his Mar-a-Lago resort and obstruction of justice, according to two people familiar with the matter.

The exact charges against the valet, Walt Nauta, were unclear because the indictment remains under seal. One lawyer for Nauta could not confirm the indictment and another lawyer for Nauta who is off on vacation could not immediately be reached for comment.

Nauta has been under scrutiny for potential obstruction charges after he told prosecutors that Trump had instructed him to move boxes of potentially classified documents out of the Mar-a-Lago storage room after the Justice department had issued a subpoena for the return of any such papers.

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The lawyers for Nauta were also told last year by prosecutors that he had given them potentially conflicting testimony that could give rise to false statements charges, the people said. Prosecutors recommended that Nauta cooperate against Trump but were rebuffed.

Trump associate Walt Nauta indicted, reports say

An aide to Donald Trump, Walt Nauta, has been indicted alongside the former president in special counsel Jack Smith’s investigation into the mishandling of classified documents, according to several reports.

Trump has also posted about the news on Truth Social. He said:

I have just learned that the “Thugs” from the Department of Injustice will be Indicting a wonderful man, Walt Nauta, a member of the U.S. Navy, who served proudly with me in the White House, retired as Senior Chief, and then transitioned into private life as a personal aide. He has done a fantastic job! They are trying to destroy his life, like the lives of so many others, hoping that he will say bad things about “Trump.” He is strong, brave, and a Great Patriot. The FBI and DOJ are CORRUPT!

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Nikki Haley, the former governor of South Carolina who is vying for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination, has responded to the news of Trump’s indictment.

Posting to Twitter, Haley said:

This is not how justice should be pursued in our country.
The American people are exhausted by the prosecutorial overreach, double standards, and vendetta politics.
It’s time to move beyond the endless drama and distractions.

This is not how justice should be pursued in our country.

The American people are exhausted by the prosecutorial overreach, double standards, and vendetta politics.

It’s time to move beyond the endless drama and distractions.

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— Nikki Haley (@NikkiHaley) June 9, 2023

Two of Trump’s lawyers say they quit

Jim Trusty and John Rowley, two lawyers representing Donald Trump, have issued a statement to say they have quit working for him.

The joint statement reads that the pair “tendered our resignations as counsel to President Trump, and we will no longer represent him on either the indicted case or the January 6 investigation”.

It goes on:

It has been an honor to have spent the last year defending him, and we know he will be vindicated in his battle against the Biden Administration’s partisan weaponization of the American justice system.
Now that the case has been filed in Miami, this is a logical moment for us to step aside and let others carry the cases through to completion.

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President Joe Biden had no advance knowledge of the indictment against Trump and found out about it like everyone else, according to the White House’s spokesperson, Olivia Dalton.

Here’s the full statement by Donald Trump announcing a shake-up of his legal team.

Posting on Truth Social, Trump wrote:

For purposes of fighting the Greatest Witch Hunt of all time, now moving to the Florida Courts, I will be represented by Todd Blanche, Esq., and a firm to be named later. I want to thank Jim Trusty and John Rowley for their work, but they were up against a very dishonest, corrupt, evil, and “sick” group of people, the likes of which has not been seen before. We will be announcing additional lawyers in the coming days. When will Joe Biden be Indicted for his many crimes against our Nation? MAGA!

Trump announces change in legal team

Donald Trump has announced a shake-up of his legal team on his social media platform, Truth Social, my colleague Hugo Lowell reports.

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Breaking: Trump announces on Truth Social that Todd Blanche will be his criminal defense attorney in the Mar-a-Lago docs case with another firm yet to be named. Jim Trusty and John Rowley are out.

— Hugo Lowell (@hugolowell) June 9, 2023

Per ppl familiar: Blanche — also the attorney for Trump adviser and in-house counsel Boris Epshteyn — for several weeks has been seen by Trump advisers as the “head honcho” of the legal team in the docs case.

— Hugo Lowell (@hugolowell) June 9, 2023



Léonie Chao-Fong (now) and Chris Stein (earlier)

Published: 2023-06-09 16:49:59

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